In a move that will provide more flexibility for facilities, Autodesk announced that they have introduced monthly, quarterly, and annual rental licenses for several of their products in the production and post industries. In general, Autodesk is launching this program for its suites, and not opening up licensing for standalone applications such as AutoCAD.
However, the Media and Entertainment division does see the debut of some standalone products available for rental. Availability for the products will vary by region to region, but in the U.S. market, the products include:
- Autodesk Entertainment Creation Suite
- Autodesk Maya
- Autodesk 3ds Max
At this point, pricing is only available for the United States market and can be viewed on the Autodesk web site. For the rest of the world, pricing will be rolled out over the coming weeks and should be fully up and running by the end of September.
The cost of the software rental has increasing duration break even points. With monthly rental, you'll be spending the same amount as a perpetual license after about 16 months. With quarterly rental, that jumps to 18 months, and annual rental matches perpetual after 24 months.
Licensing for the rental plans is on a per-user basis and does not use the standard network floating licensing routines used by the purchased applications. Instead, the Autodesk 360 cloud services portal is used and system admins provide specific artists access to an application. The software may be assigned to a specific user for a period as short as one month.
This is obviously more restrictive than it would be to simply add licenses to a network server and allow any machine to have access to the software. However, the system does provide much more flexibility to ramp up and down the number of software packages available to a facility than what is currently available. And if artists are working remotely, this could be more convenient than using network licensing over a VPN.
For more information, Autodesk has provided a FAQ as to how the new system works.
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